Wednesday, March 16, 2011

What's at stake in the workers' rights fights

This is the most cogent analysis of the Wisconsin power grab and "what it all means" for the future that I've seen yet. As an added bonus it has a very interesting analogy to the health reform fight. Seriously, read it all but this graf really gets to the gist of what's at stake:
While it might seem that the current battle in Wisconsin is just an extension of a now three-decades long piffle between liberals and conservatives, it's more than that. Current Wisconsin events, even if many of the players don't realize it, is a core fight over what America is. It's the latest battle in a protracted fight in maybe the most important ideological state in America's post-Revolution political history. It's the fight for the "Wisconsin Idea," which in part called for the states" laboratory of democracy" to create "well-constructed legislation aimed at benefiting the greatest number of people." One of the primary movers of the Wisconsin Idea was state icon and progressive architect "Fighting" Bob La Follette. La Follette was the politician kids dream about being before they meet their first lobbyist with a wad of cash. As governor, he backed a workers' comp program, women's suffrage and a minimum wage. If you are a wage earner today in America, you owe Bob La Follette. As state governor he "repaired" the state budget deficit with a moderate tax on corporations.
For the record, while I think the analogy to health reform works, it's not really analogous because it accepts the so-called "ramming through" of that bill which happened after well over a year of debate and hearings and such. It wasn't enacted through procedural trickery in the first three months the Dems held the majority. [via SoBeale]

[More posts daily at the Detroit News.]

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